I MAY DESTROY YOU
Every woman should be watching I May Destroy You! ESPECIALLY black women. Though we are still in the midst of the series, audiences are in awe of this powerful yet comedic television series. Michaela Coel is best known for starring in Chewing Gum and a few episodes of Black Mirror, but her directorial debut has propelled her stardom to new levels.
Coel stars as Arabella, a young author who became famous after her tweets went viral. One night she decides to take a break from writing and goes out to get some drinks with friends. When she wakes up the next day, she can’t recount her steps. She does vaguely remember a situation where she was in the bathroom stall, with a man over her, and a thudding noise in the background. When she finally puts the pieces together, she realizes she has been raped.
I don’t want to give too much away seeing as the season still in progress, but the series shows Arabella’s journey to find her rapist and herself. Based on the traumatic events she experienced, she must re-evaluate the people around her and her relationship with her family.
What I found really compelling was that the series touched upon how black women and gay men often deal with stigmas when it comes to sexual assault. So often we see white women speaking out about their experiences with sexual assault, but when black women or gay men try to do the same they aren’t met with the same response. Black women often told that it was their fault the assault occurred, this is because we are constantly being over sexualized. We are always told to be strong and brush things off, so Arabella struggles to fully heal from her rape because she doesn’t want to appear weak. And when her friend Kwame, a gay black man, tried to report his assault, he wasn’t even taken seriously which causes him to internalize his pain.
When I first started to watch it, I thought it was going to be along the lines of Euphoria. I wasn’t really able to get past the first episode of Euphoria because I felt like I was a little too old to be watching it. I May Destroy You however, has deeper themes that people can relate to and connect with. SO many women are victims of rape or assault. I am not, but this show is truly a great representation of how a woman, more importantly a Black woman, deals with the trauma of rape and works through the healing process. I think it’s important for people to watch this show because far too many women are victims of assault. It’s extremely important for victims to learn how to properly deal with their trauma, but also how to be a supportive friend or family member through this process.
I May Destroy You is available on HBO, HBO Max, and HBO GO with new episodes every Monday night at 10PM.